Who Is SoHo Broadway? What I Learned From The Annual Meeting!

If you weren’t able to attend, the SoHo Broadway BID has a new name…the SoHo Broadway Initiative!

While the name might have changed, the objective of “keeping the streets safe and clean” hasn’t.

The meeting consisted of a welcoming by Emily Hellstrom (VP) and Brian Steinwurtzel (President), a resident, and a Broadway landlord, respectively.  Next up was the finance report by Richard Benenson, the Treasurer, who spoke about the FY 2015 projected excess of revenues of $127K due to a delay in the public outreach as well as the $44K projected deficit in FY 2016.

Other speakers from outreach, program services, clean team and the executive director occurred, leaving many questions about the street lighting, food vendors and mapping project.

Street Cleaning Team w/ Henry Buhl, Founder of ACE Programs for the Homeless

Street Cleaning Team w/ Henry Buhl, Founder of ACE Programs for the Homeless

While the presentations were scheduled from 7-8pm, due to extreme interest, the meeting went until around 9pm!  A highlight was the COO from Dean & DeLuca, John Barton spoke about the companies rich history in SoHo and the brand stories that he hopes to communicate through a store renovation that will be starting soon.

Presentation by COO Dean & Deluca

Presentation by COO Dean & Deluca John Barton

Some interesting tidbits I learned:

  • Commercial tenants and their representatives do not have any voting power (Since I work at Corcoran, I received a voting card but wasn’t able to vote on anything)
  • Food vendors, specifically “Halal”, have been caught dumping their old oils down the subway grates (gross!)
  • While it isn’t legal to have general vendors on the subway grates, food vendors are allowed to operate (subway exhaust + food = ?  …)
  • There is a “20-foot rule” where vendors are not allowed to operate between the middle of each buildings doorway
  • The general consensus is that there is too much foot traffic and too many street vendors (I actually disagree!)
  • The budget does not separate out how much money actually was spent on the re-branding of the SoHo Broadway Initiative logo and website

The night ended with Ben’s Pizza and a take-home tote bag that says “WE ARE SOHO BROADWAY”: